Saturday, December 15, 2007

Conspiracy against Santa?

I think there is a conspiracy going on against Santa Claus; or at least the Finnish real Santa.

First a Swedish engineering company Sweco announced that

Santa Claus should live in Kyrgyzstan

By starting his journey there, Santa can achieve the most efficient around-the-world trip to distribute Christmas gifts. He can eliminate time-consuming detours and avoid subjecting his reindeer to undue strain.

Why figure out where Santa Claus should live?
This is a good exercise, and not just for fun. In recent years we have tried to think up original ideas for Christmas cards and gifts to our clients. One year we gave our clients blueprints for a gingerbread house, to highlight the fact that we have architects in the Group. This year we have chosen to show how GIS can contribute to a peaceful holiday season.

As it turns out later, their statement did not contribute to a peaceful holiday but on the contrary. Not only we Finns did get disturbed by this.

Helsingin Sanomat reveals in its English issue the basics for the calculations:

Sweco presents an avalanche of facts to justify its shock discovery: Santa has to make it to 2.5 billion households in just one night.
For the delivery of gifts, Father Christmas can spare a massive 34 microseconds (millionths of a second) per home. And on the round-the-world delivery route Santa’s reindeer sleigh will travel at the modest speed of 5,800 kilometres per second.
Logistically speaking, all this would be easiest done from Kyrgyzstan. If Santa lived in Korvatunturi in Finnish Lapland - a place traditionally branded as the location of Santa’s Grotto for Finnish children – the presented figures would be significantly higher.
Unravelling the location of Santa’s home was not too difficult, Larsson boasts. "It took us half a day to produce the calculations."

I think there calculations took the wrong route somewhere since already earlier 606 magazine has proved that Sweco’s theory can’t be right:

Assuming Santa's sleigh to be at least two million tons with each present weighing an average of two pounds, the lead reindeer would absorb 14.3 quintillion joules of energy per second, each. They will burst into flame almost instantaneously. The entire reindeer team will be vaporized within 4.26 thousandths of a second. So Santa clearly does not travel on earth, now does he? He must travel through space where there is no resistance and he can travel as fast as his reindeer can take him, which could be faster then the speed of sound, for all we know.

My explanation to this dilemma is look-a-likes. All celebrities have people representing them when needed, so why wouldn’t Santa give part of his enormous job to his most trusted eldest elves?

Well, who else except us got disturbed? The people in Kyrdyszstan! according to AFP-news:

Authorities in Kyrgyzstan launched a contest to track down Father Christmas somewhere inside the mountainous Central Asian state -- a week after Swedish experts reported that he must be there.
"The state tourism agency always knew that Father Christmas lived here and finally Swedish scientists have proved it," Akbar Dzhigitov, an official from the Kyrgyz tourism board, told journalists in the capital Bishkek.
"We have a lot of work ahead of us since Kyrgyzstan really wants to be recognised as the true home of Father Christmas," better known in predominantly Sunni Muslim Kyrgyzstan as "Grandfather Frost," Dzhigitov said.

In addition to chasing Santa in the high mountains, Kyrgyzstan is facing an enormous task next year. According to the country weblog of Kyrgyzstan:

The state tourism agency under the Presidency of Kyrgyz Republic and the Ministry of Culture and Information are jointly initiating the series of festivals under the name “Kyrgyzstan is the true home of Santa Claus” for the world recognition of Kyrgyzstan as Santa’s motherland.
In the framework of the festivals, the state agency on tourism is planning to implement a whole bunch of activities such as the World Congress of Santa Claus in 2008 year with participation of BBC news, Euronews, CNN and other leading mass media and the Christmas travel of Santa for Christmas gifts distribution to children around the world with participation of famous political figures, “stars” of world art and culture.

Well, that was not all. Today I tried to review the SantaTV webpage in StumbleUpon. It turned out that someone (meaning anonymous) had discovered the page and tagged it as pornography two years ago! No wonder there were no other reviews of that page.

I reported it to SU ;)


Anonymous said...

I hope Finish children and grown-ups will take it easy, and generously. The Sweco's calculations at least helped Kyrgyzstan, which is not listed among the rich and well-off countries, to come to the international spotlight, and the Kyrgyz people are smartly trying to use this opportunity. Of course with the expected fraud in the tomorrow's parlimanetary elections, there is danger that the commercial-driven Santa Claus may try to become a life-long president of Kyrgyzstan, but the community of snow-men and snow-women around the world may help the country's democracy to get to a more stable path!

Anonymous said...

Jamby +1
let Santa Claus be life-long president of Kyrgyzstan. People would be happy :)